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Keep Volunteers Motivated
from the Official Soccer Fundraiser's Guide

by J. Alden Briggs, Jr. and Jana Duffy

Once you have recruited your volunteers, whether drones or die-hards, you need to keep them motivated. Here are some tips gathered from booster club members from all over the country:

  1. Make them feel needed. Most volunteers quit because they're not told what to do, and think nobody really needs them anyway.

  2. Let them know that you understand they have other obligations. Make sure they understand that they are still necessary for your booster club to survive.

  3. Most volunteers want something in return for their time and effort, and that something is usually recognition. Make a point of drawing attention to a good job, a good suggestion, or an extra effort, and let them realize you're grateful for their help.

  4. Respond to all suggestions from your volunteers. Tell them when you agree, disagree, or need more time to think about it, but respond.

  5. Consult your volunteer workers on anything that may affect their duties or roles - schedules, assignments, etc. Encourage them to ask questions if they're not sure about anything.

  6. Recognize that your volunteers are not experts. Everyone has certain skills, ambitions - and weaknesses. Be patient.

  7. Encourage everyone to work as a team, not in competition. A volunteer project is a place for team effort and collaboration.

  8. Don't involve volunteers in staff politics.

  9. Realize that volunteers have feelings too.

  10. Give your volunteers alternatives. If something needs to be done, it doesn't have to be done only one way - try to provide options.

  11. And probably most important ( and not just for working with volunteers ) is to keep communication lines open.


Editor's Note: This article is reprinted with permission from the Booster Clubs of America.

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